After the Feasts

29 Dec 2015 – The Survivour Naps…

Sat: the stomach and body need to rest. Seems like napping is getting to be a norm and good company – hahaha. Could not bring myself out of the comforts of this tiny AC studio-apartment. Time to catch up with the 2015 Season’s Greetings mail and to open gifts.

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Perfect paper napkins for both Christmas and the CNY. The pineapple is recognized as a traditional expression of ‘welcome’ throughout the South and in areas along the Eastern Seaboard of the USA. And for the Chinese – Pineapple (凤梨) – wealth, luck, excellent fortune, tkx Linn.

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Looks like the Christmas village has to go up again in future now that these lights arrived, tkx May. The piano looks kind of empty without the village for this Christmas!

For 2016 I should be welcoming good fortune and luck with bright starlight.

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Happy Boxing Day and St Stephen’s Day on this 2nd Day of Christmas when my true love gave to me Two Turtle Doves. Gledelig Jul and not God Jul as L&M paternal great-grand-mother Emma would say after Christmas eve is over.

12390963_1370399619671501_8351074935979779435_nThis share from FB made my day 🙂 Must have given Ferrero Rocher Chocolate to just about everyone for this season – so let the humour in again, and I even like Brussels sprouts.

Comment from Mario, an Irish friend –  Ha ha, beautiful !! After a couple of drinks would they even notice. My reply – I learnt to like Brussels sprouts in Ireland and from the Irish I learnt to drink with a humour.

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Sun: the mind and the stomach are not friends 😦 Decided to give it a miss for the Christmas lunch. Apologies Bev, do not usually cancel at the last moment, unless of real ouch! This place looks like it serves good key-lime pie. Sorry to miss Two Bakers, one of the newer faces in Jalan Besar’s cafe scene. The two chefs here are Le Cordon Bleu Paris-trained so you can be sure that their food here is of standard. Pix credits to Ting.

A lovely evening catching up with AudreyW, Clem & Sue. Glad that they could swing by to keep company with an old auntie 🙂 🙂 🙂

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Mon: Happy Birthday PP. Really enjoy our annual trips together and looking forward to our next. Great to catch up with Grace and tkx for the goodies from Myanmar and Vietnam.

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App 3+K starting from Marine C to Fort Rd, muggy and warm having to stop for some mins for shelter from a rain storm. Continued with a light drizzle to Fort Rd. Glad for the recent completion to cross safely. Another 2+K from there to the Gardens by the Bay/Bay East crossing the Marina Barrage to the domes/Bay South. Tkx for the company Grace, my SIN buddy hiker.

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The best with this location is that cycling or walking on paths without cars – app 5-6K (1 to 2hrs depending on your pace) walk from where I live.

IMG_7945Been wanting to check out the Christmas display and to see the Cloud Forest which is my first experience. Thank goodness the crowds were not at its worst! The usual cost for entry into these 2 cooled conservatories is S$15 for seniors now being SG50 FOC for SIN seniors, note that there are only 3 more days for this offer.

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A short visit to the Flower Dome to capture and see these displays. Have been there many times, so no need to linger with the crowds.

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Cloud Forest: quite an experience walking around the Cloud Mountain, accessible by an elevator and descending it via a circular path where a 35-m/15ft waterfall provides refreshing cool air.

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Bright colourful lights at the Supertrees with music and crowds making merry for the evening. Feeling all the aches in every muscle and joint after 5hrs on the feet, it was time to find the Bayfront MRT station!

One of the most tragic things I know about human nature is that all of us tend to put off living. We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon instead of enjoying the roses that are blooming outside our windows today – Dale Carnegie

Christmas 2015

26 Dec 2015 – Let The Feasts Begin…

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Left to right –
IMG_7830SookFenn Lim, Aisha Rahim, Peggy Tan, Raymond Chan, Carol Lek, Tin Htet HtetBo, Aimeng Sim, Jeremy, AileenKoh, Zainiffa and Francis, Not in the pic Cherie & Dennis (On Leave). Thank you Aisha for naming her co-workers.

The ‘Happy-Go-Lucky’, name given to me by Aisha. So the ‘Happy-Go-Lucky’ contributes this bottle of Australian wine ‘Cock and Bull’ 🙂 appropriate for any office party 🙂 🙂

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Thu: appreciations to H&H for including me in their office lunch. Like Aileen new style earrings. It is such an honour to see how our diverse multi-cultural people working together and sharing the joys of the different celebrations, unlike Somalia and Brunei that have ban Christmas celebrations!!!!

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2015/12/somalia-bans-christmas-year-celebrations-151223180327602.html

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Made gravlaks/marinated salmon for Les&Ivy for Christmas Eve.

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Grandnephew Lucas’s angelica voice is a joy to hear at the Holy Family Catholic Church on East Coast Rd. Pleasant walk on this full-moon night.

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Fri : at Tanglin Club

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Appreciations to Les&Ivy for Christmas family lunch at Tanglin Club. With 21 of us, the atmosphere + all the poppers and noise, mess, etc made our merry-making a good time for the Green, Orange and Purple Generations. The wines brought by Les are as always good.

My dream is to be able to get all us 66 from my father LAM TinYue’s branch together just one time before my days are over…

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The food this year is better than that of the previous years. Discovered later that they just had a change of management in the food section.

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After such a big lunch with all those wines, had to take a long nap! With this orchid arrangement in SIN and this gift to Linn & family in USA – Bon Appetit and Cheers!

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O Holy Night

24 Dec 2015 – Greetings From Us

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Favourite performers for my favourtie Christmas Carol and they are personal but they managed to give me that extra chill when listening to them. In many ways this is a simple melody but the notes range is not easy to achieve with sincere heart-felt emotional dynamics…

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Male Solo: Pavarotti (1945-2007) may he RIP
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iM5IDFRRfaY

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Female Solo: Lexi Walker – whose voice range and control are amazing
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zZNAlRhjbjc

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Female Group: Celtic Women – angelica and sweet voices
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a5MpQsLJvOw

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Male Group: Il Divoquartet of pop/opera crossover singers.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jkI8BVplIew

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Male Choir – The King’s Singers and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NU2TlwcH3h4

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Piano Solo – Garth Smith
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aaBb188wW-M

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Winter Solstice 2015

22 Dec 2015 – The Rebirth Of The Sun

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Mon: an interesting video from the US Embassy Oslo especially for those who asked what I used to eat in Norway during Christmas. Today I still enjoy the rakfish, ribbe and aquarvit. Tkx for the share, Thomas.

God jul og skål til alle mine norske familie og venner.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8U2tQCWCErM&feature=youtu.be

Caught up with these 2 movies which were featured in my absence

MV5BMTExMTUxNDQ5MjdeQTJeQWpwZ15BbWU4MDk4NTgxMzQx._V1_UX67_CR0,0,67,98_AL_Woman in Gold*****is the remarkable true story of one woman’s journey to reclaim her heritage and seek justice for what happened to her family. 60yrs after she fled Vienna/Austria during WW II, a Jewish woman Maria Altman sought to regain a world famous painting of her aunt plundered by the Nazis during World War II.

11191379_oriWalk in the Woods***is a sterling showcase for two great acting veterans, Robert Redford and Nick Nolte. Watching these two interact and listening to their wizened characters’ riffs amid gorgeous scenery on the AT (filmed by another film veteran, cinematographer John Bailey) is a sheer delight – which is a good thing since that comprises the bulk of the movie. Wonderful memories of the AT…

Mon: M1 staff was at my place to try to install a DVB-12 set-top box and one indoor antenna FOC for qualifying the MDA Assistance Scheme. Since I have no TV, they will return another day when I manage to get an inexpensive one or ask around anyone who wants to get rid of an old TV!!!

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Tue: Happy Winter Solstice, also known as Dong Zhi or some Cantonese call it Khor Tong. Tkx Carmel & Mei-Lin for breakfast. Good to catch up and see Mei-Lin’s mom Irene again – forgot to take pix!

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The origin of the word Yule, has several suggested origins from the Old English word, geõla, the Old Norse word jõl, a pagan festival celebrated also at the winter solstice, the rebirth of the Sun. Peace be with you all no matter how or if you celebrate the Winter Solstice.

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4th Sunday Of Advent 2015

21 Dec 2015 – Last Weekend Before Christmas

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Sat: Catching up with bro Steven’s lovely family. Tkx to sis-in-law PohKit, nieces Judy, Daisy, nephews Vince&Annie, Clem, grandnephews Stanley, Darrly and Andrew for including me in their family lunch. First time at New Lucky Claypot Rice****#02-19, Holland Drive Market & Food Centre. Yummy.

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http://www.streetdirectory.com/newluckyclaypotrice/

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Stumbled upon this beautiful location and set-up on 42 Waterloo St after a gathering at CC last night. If my memory serves me correctly, this used to be Action Theater,  a delightful small play-house, restaurant and an alfresco bar. Now Centre 42 with intentions to be a focal point for incubation of new works, nurturing of playwright talents, research and discourse of SIN theatre.

https://thelongnwindingroad.wordpress.com/2010/01/13/where-you-could-once-have-your-car-fixed-in-a-church-memories-of-waterloo-street/

four-lit-purple-advent-candles1Sun: 4th Sunday of Advent where Advent is a season observed in some Christian churches as a time of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the Nativity of Jesus at Christmas. The term is a Latin word meaning ‘coming’.

In my Advent calendar today is Khob khun ka/Thai for the 24 languages of Thank you and no, I have not learnt them all yet!

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Kiera’s little workshop has a delightful mini breakfast on the tray with all kinds of toasts and chocolate donuts the size of a 5cent coin. Mud-Rock is an interesting ceramic studio located at 126 Towner Rd. The taxi driver who drove Ivy and I there must be one of the most annoying drivers I have encountered – he kept sighing and yawning aloud! and budding in our conversation.

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Good to catch up with Michelle at Aveson Travel at Tanglin Mall.

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La Ventana****at Dempsey Rd serves up tasteful Catalonian small plates. With LesIvy​’s wines, nothing can go wrong where F&B are concerned.Tkx for a lovely evening.

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Good to meet up with Korean friends Mejin&Jung. Interesting place own by another Korean serving Spanish food.

Food is for eating, and good food is to be enjoyed… I think food is, actually, very beautiful in itself – Delia Smith

T’is The 2015 Season…

19 Dec 2105 – … To Be Jolly

ffcb407f91_345x518_886c64faa2Thu: Saw Snoopy And Charlie Brown – The Peanuts Movie (2015)***movie yesterday. Based on Charles M. Schulz’s comic strip ‘Peanuts, this 3D animated comedy film focuses on Snoopy and his friendship with his human best friend, Charlie Brown. When a ‘Little Red-Haired Girl’ moves into their neighbourhood, a smitten Charlie, along with the help of Snoopy, embarks on new activities in hopes of getting her attention. More a fan of Charles Schutz’s comic strip than the movie which has a good message!

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Edited – looks like I have missed the write-up for the National Design Centre at Middle Rd – this place has a nice indoor and outdoor cafe and worth the time to check it out. Accidentally stumbled into the ‘UNAGING’ talks and found it rather interesting. Being the eldest person there, the subject was quite appropriate 🙂

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Nice to meet up with Henry for a drink at Victoria Bar, Hotel InterContinental. Tkx for taking time off your busy work schedule to catch up, Henry.

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Fri: went around taking pix of decorated Christmas trees in SIN many years ago and made it into a game to guess where the trees are located. This year will just download this site and enjoy it with the music. Just show how age has caught up and getting to lazy to even take out more than the basic decorations, ie the advent calendar and a new music box. The host of angels and family pix are on the piano all year round…

http://www.silverkris.com/stories/best-christmas-trees-singapore-2015

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4tGOohsBW90

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Welcome back to SIN, Kitty from Sierra Leon/Africa and Beng from Melbourne/Australia. Their mother Mrs Eu, lives just down the road from me. Good to meet his family from Australia. Kitty and Beng crossed my path in Dublin days. She used to teach me music and I used to baby-sit her kids, but that was another lifetime ago 🙂

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Delightful pre-Christmas gathering with Yoshie, Seb and Adrian. With thoughts of L&M and their families I bought a bottle of the 2015 Nouvean Beaujolais, the holidays have now official started 🙂 Tkx guys for fixing my computer and to Yoshie for the lovely flowers.

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TGIF and the last Friday before Christmas. A good weekend to all and some thoughts into the holiday season…

Choose Your Own Identity

16 Dec 2015 – From The Best Of Both Worlds…

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Mon: Health Promotion Board sent some info regarding Health Behaviour Study Of SIN in my absence. Found 2 more notes on my door upon my return. Since they were showing that much interest to contact me, decided to contact them and ask what it was all about.

Turned out that they want me to take a survey with health questions. Was pleasantly surprised with a NTUC Fair Price S$10 voucher for taking the survey 🙂

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Found some cardboard cut-out Christmas trees (S$1.50) for 10pieces and a red paper gift-bag (S$2) from Cat Socrates. Probably no one realized that it is written in Norwegian that ‘Money should not be enclosed in letters’. From Art Friend’s, the cute tiny wooden trees (S$6.85) when stuck on the cardboard ones give a lovely 3D effect. Good for decorations or gift-tags. Most satisfied with this purchase!

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Picked up the rest of the Christmas gifts and more or less done with shopping – yeah. Now to wrap them as best as I know how and then to present them. The working area is a slight improvement as compared to a few days ago! Blog postings edited and updated. Time to catch up with friends and getting ready to say goodbye to 2015…

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Tue: Appreciations to Carmel for taking time to have breakfast with me at Killiney Siglap***It takes an Irish to find good MeeSiam here in SIN 🙂 🙂

An interesting share from May. I remember when L&M questioning their identity and my reply has always been and still is that they have been blessed with the best of both worlds and it is up to them to live their life to the fullest. And today they both make me proud to be their mother and grandmother to their children…

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I never understood how little I understood race until I tried to explain to my 5-year-old-son…

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/14/magazine/choose-your-own-identity.html?smid=fb-nytimes&smtyp=cur

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IMG_7711IMG_7712Wed: 0800hrs to avoid crowds at Beach Road Prawn Mee Eating House@美芝律大虾面***370/372 East Coast Road and first time at this location – ngoh hiang here got one of the best ratings in SIN.

Tkx to Ting&CH for taking time to catch up. Appetite is not as it used to be, but still good tasting broth which is the secret of this dish.

I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it’s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope. Which is what I do, and that enables you to laugh at life’s realities – Dr. Seuss